JP3.6 The effect of biomass burning aerosols on precipitation and cloud properties in Australia

Wednesday, 30 June 2010
Exhibit Hall (DoubleTree by Hilton Portland)
Jennifer D. Small, JPL, Pasadena, CA; and J. H. Jiang

Aerosols are one of the most important but poorly understood factors that influence global climate change, either directly by interaction with radiation or indirectly through interaction with clouds. We investigate trends in aerosol, precipitation and cloud properties in Australia using multiple satellite data records spanning nearly 30 years. Australia was identified as a region of interested due to 1) the regional nature of aerosols and wide spread biomass burning on the continent, 2) the occurrence of two distinct fire seasons, one in the north and a second in the south which occur during different months and 3) prolonged drought for the last decade.

The analysis uses TOMS and OMI aerosol measurements, cloud properties from ISCCP, and NCEP/NCAR reanalysis data to characterize cloud properties and meteorological conditions. Aerosol-cloud interactions are investigated by analyzing inter-annual, decadal variability, and the long-term trend of biomass burning generated aerosols and the corresponding long term trends in precipitation and cloud properties.

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